Rudd's latest collaboration is with the young, conservatory-trained Mongolian singer Badma Khanda and her five-member ensemble, which includes a throat singer, horse-head fiddle and bass, and instruments similar to flute, dulcimer, and zither. Rudd calls the results "art folk," an apt phrase for music that's often stark but never less than beguiling.
Twinning with Khanda, matching the throat singer's gargle with growled multiphonics, or just floating over the strings, Rudd throws himself into everything with such relish you might be hard-pressed to tell which tunes are traditional and which are his without glancing at the credits. The Buryats meet him halfway, occasionally recalling Django or country swing, even boogie-woogie on the delirious title track, where Khanda beats it eight-to-the-bar and Rudd quotes "Buttons and Bows." East is East, and West is West, and wherever the four winds blow—that's not just a quote, it's his philosophy.
Reviews"The final number set off a spontaneous standing ovation. The overall shared expression of each facial expression in the audience “ including myself “ was that of re-encouragement, of having experienced something for the very first time which no one could even relate to anything previously encountered, a rarity to be sure in this day and age of regurgitation.